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tv   Hardball With Chris Matthews  MSNBC  April 1, 2010 12:00am-1:00am EDT

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kent jones is our tea party profit tiering. >> the second tea party convention is coming up. this time they're making a few changes. the national tea party unity convention needed to shake its fancy pants obama elitist image. this time they chose a down-home venue to take america back. ♪ luck be a lady
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tonight ♪ the polazzo museum. grassroots without the grass -- and jersey boys. it happens july 15 through 17. the timing for this country is crucial as we head into the fall elections, we must be united in our opposition to the obama/pelosi/reid axis of fiscal evil. work with your fellow patriots to help save our country. but first, fellow patriots, they're going to need $400 apiece. bring your rage and your platinum card. but if you're a fired up tea partier out of town, know this -- registration for the convention requires confirmed three-night hotel accommodations at the palazzo las vegas resort. hotel cancellation policy is 72 hours prior. hotel will require a deposit of one night plus tax per suite to guarantee accommodations. it's nonrefundable and
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nontransferable. if it doesn't strike a blow against the present democracy, i don't know what does. >> that does it for us tonight, "hardball" is next. good night. drill, baby drill. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. leading off tonight, finding the sweet spot. president obama made a big move today on energy. his goal was to win over some republicans on legislation that will end this country's dependents on foreign oil and oil, period, by allowing some offshore drilling. did he find the sweet spot? did he give enough to win over enough of the republican crowd to build a bill? no one's surprised at some environmentals are unhappy that obama's opening up a big stretch
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of america's coastlines to oil and gas drilling, nor are we surprised in the current political climate that some republicans are complaining he's not giving enough. the good news for the president is that based upon some comments by republicans, like senator lindsay graham and u.s. congressman eric cantor of virginia, a state coastline that president obama's including in his pro-drilling move, are saying good things about the president's plan. plus, republican lawmakers in georgia are calling for the impeachment of that state's attorney general. why? because he refuses to file a lawsuit claiming that the new health care overhaul is unconstitutional. so, i guess it's unconstitutional to not say the president's unconstitutional. is that the deal? the attorney general joins us tonight from georgia. also, how's this for outrage? you've heard of that kansas church group that protested of the funerals of americans killed at war. they say military deaths abroad are god's punishment for tolerance for gays here at home. now, a father who's suing the group has been ordered to pay their court costs. the dad's with us tonight. talking about outrage. and when someone wants to endorse you for u.s. senate,
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make sure they're not the sort to make you more enemies than friends. that's advice to florida governor charlie crist might have wish period he'd follow. that's in the "side show." and talk about the widening scandaling. i tell you what i, a layperson thinks should be done to priests who abuse children. let's start with president obama's decision to lift the offshore ban on oil and gas drilling. ron ray is a political commentator and i have no idea what he's going to say. and ron christie is a republican strategy. and tonight, at least, i have no idea what he's going to say. he's of course a former aide to the vice president we had recently called dick cheney. and that's how it is pronounced properly. let's go to ron reagan. the president looks like he's headed for the sweet spot. he knows he has to sell this climate bill. the only way he's figured he can sell the climate bill that's california out of the house, get rid of cap and trade? bring offshore drilling to bring in the developers, the republicans aboard the ship. is this the sweet spot? has he got if figured? >> obviously he hopes he has. he hopes he can woo moderate democrats and maybe even a few republicans about this. look, we could look at this from an environmental standpoint, we could look at it from an energy standpoint, or the political standpoint, which is what you're doing here. from an environmental standpoint, drill, baby, drill, means spill, baby, spill. so that's not good. from an energy standpoint even the bush administration's department of energy pointed out that if you opened up even more
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coastlines than president obama is figuring here to exploration, by 2030, when full production actually -- actually was under way, we might increase our oil supply in this country by 1% so that leaves us with the politics. the jury is out on that. you know, maybe some moderate democrats will be wooed. maybe some republicans although by the the end of the day i'm reluctant to imagine they'll get on board. >> ron christy, it seems to me that a couple -- well, a couple of hours ago today, i thought that any chance of a climate bill was dead. any chance of an energy bill is dead because the bill that came out of house is so detested by the republicans you'd never get 60 votes in the senate to pass the thing. now i wondered if he's reshuffled the deck enough to give more to the developers, the people who want to drill now, so he could get what he wants, long-term meeting -- meeting of this long-term challenge of climate change and energy dependents on countries that don't like us. >> look, it's smart politics, agree, with ron reagan for once. a smart move by the president. lindsay graham, lisa murkowski
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senator from alaska applauding what he did today. the devils always in the details? is there really oil and gas out there to be explored? >> well i assume there is. not a child about this. >> that's my point. >> yeah. >> let's take a look. let's see the specifics, whether or not there is energy out there. >> do you think far enough out that you can't see him from the beach and yet get the oil there, right? >> i'm sure that is what he's hoping. >> let's go to lindsay graham who trying to work together to put in an energy bill. from south carolina. quote, this is a good first step. drilling is an important piece to making our nation more energy dependent. but i realize we can't simply drill our way, to energy independence. we need a comprehensive energy strategy for our nation who breaks our addiction of foreign oil. ron reagan, lindsay graham remains i hope that we don't get him in trouble. he's trying to find something here. he's trying to find a way to get
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us off the hook of depending on those countries in the middle east that we know that we're not going to have forever. and at the same time, deal with the fossil fuel problem, which is we have to find alternative energy to -- to what we're doing to our environment. >> yeah. the one problem we have here of course is that in terms of the strategy to wean us from foreign oil and that's a national security issue as well of course is the longer we remain independent the more that we rely on foreign oil. not enough here in this country to satisfy our need here. so if we're going to drill for oil here and encourage the use of oil here we'll be depending on the saudis to supply us with oil. one other factor that we may want to keep in mind here, that is the leases won't be granted until 2012, production not at earlier until 2017. full production by 2030. by that time americans decide that oil, drill, baby, drill is not the way to go. >> all right. president obama is thinking of you, ron reagan, more than ron
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christie now. here he is talking to those on the environmental side of this fight. he addressed. >> i'm glad he's thinking of me more than ron. >> i think it's personal. those who oppose the decision to drill. let's listen to the present trying to woo you back here. here he is, president obama. >> okay. >> let's listen. >> those who strongly disagree with this decision, including those who say we should not open any new areas to drilling, but what i want to emphasize is that this announcement is part of a broader strategy that will move us from an economy that runs on fossil fuels and foreign oil, to one that relies more on homegrown fuels and clean energy. and the only way this transition will succeed is if it strengthens our economy in the short term and the long run. to fail to recognize this reality would be a mistake. >> well, that's question, do the republicans want an energy bill? ron christie, you come here sort of as a republican to put it lightly, do you think there
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this announcement is part of a is -- nobody wants to save this president's bacon if you're a partisan. but if you care about this country, are those who are willing to say, well, let's take a look. here's john boehner who said -- so, he still thinks there's not enough. that's boehner. boehner, the golfer. the hard-ass republican guy who won't give an inch to anything, who has to pee on this guy's parade no matter what he says. i don't care what he says sometimes. >> careful. >> no, seriously. >> boehner's my friend. >> yeah but just playing partisan politics here. in the interest of this country everybody knows the same thing, basically. there is a climate change problem, anyone who reads the paper thinks, or knows. the man has something do with it, number two. and number three, stop depending on our oil. crazy. and is the president doing something? he he is doing something. you say everyone who knows anything says there is global climate change i think there is serious scientific disputes of whether or not that is actually viable but let me address your question -- >> you really challenge it. >> of course, i would challenge it.
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we've seen what happened in east anglo. i think that it is a gimmick. >> there are people who question -- there are people who question the evolution and doesn't mean there is evolution. >> chris, wait a second. so we're supposed to take scientists who have a fiduciary interest to benefit for some of their grants. >> this is party line. >> no this is not party line. no, i have researched this. why should we take hook line and sinker what some environmentalists have said about climate change. why not an honest debate. >> because the weather in boston right now over the last amount of x-years is the same in philadelphia. getting warmer and warmer. >> and sure warm here on the east coast. we had blizzards. one of the coldest winters record but let me answer -- >> you are discrediting yourself, ron. >> actually ron reagan, i'm actually making my point. it was one of the coldest winters that we've had on record. >> making up a point of one that discredits you. >> no it doesn't discredit me. >> ron, your thoughts. >> listen, weather is not climate. forget it. it isn't.
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it isn't, ron, and you know it as well as i do. >> oh, okay. >> we're talking about a trend line. >> forget about climate change for the moment because we don't have to even discuss climate change. we could discuss national security here. everybody knows, forget about climate change. everyone knows the future is in solar and wind and renewable, sustainable energy sources. that's where we have to be going now. not to the past. we've got to be going to the 21st century not the 19th. >> now, ron reagan, here's where i agree with you. i agree with all of those but add one more component to that. you need to add energy energy. france has over 80% of their domestic supply, supplied by nuclear energy. >> how come the only thing that you like about the french is the nuclear energy. you never say one good thing about the french on any topic. you don't eat their french fries. >> freedom fries. >> see. you have this cherry-picking way of selecting your allies. >> hey. >> you are like sarkozy, one issue, nuclear. >> that's it. >> and everything else they're cynical, they will do everything, they don't have any values, morality. >> i agree. one common ground i do applaud the president on this.
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i think he'll take a lot of heat on the left for his decision to open these leases up, it's a good thing and as ron reagan says and i agree with and as you said this is a national security issue. we need more domestic production. let's do it together. >> i like when you change hats put on the american hat and take off of the republican hat. but your thoughts, ron reagan? final thing. the president wasn't very happy today. you're not happy. he's not happy. sometimes the solution is when everybody's moderately unhappy. here's president obama. he wasn't exactly thrilled with the prospect of doing this. of offshore drilling when he was a candidate back in 2008. let's listen to the old obama because he's a critic of the new obama. let's watch. >> offshore drilling would not lower gas prices today. it would not lower gas prices tomorrow. it would not lower gas prices this year. it will not lower gas prices five years from now. in fact, president bush's own energy department says that we won't see a drop of oil from his
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own proposal until 2017. >> well, now he's compromise. >> see, he's backing up my earlier point there. >> yeah. >> i agree. i welcome this compromise. let's have this debate. >> i, like ron christie, i'm a fan of nuclear power but i prefer fusion power. the sun and we ought to start using it. >> oh you've tricked us again, ron reagan. ron reagan, thank you, sir. thank you, rons. ron christie and ron reagan. coming up attorney generals in 14 states are suing the government over health care reform. they say it's unconstitutional but the attorney general in the state of georgia, people, they want to impeach for not suing. i will ask attorney general himself why he's holding his ground. it's a conservative state. he's a democrat. is he the odd man out, but could he be right? new mousse temptations by jell-o. a rich and airy treat. ♪
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senator kay bailey hutchison is staying in the u.s. senate after all. the texas republican made the announcement today reversing an earlier pledge to re-sign her seat this year. and will serve out her term, which ends in 2012. she ran for governor of texas but lost a tough primary race against incumbent rick perry earlier this month. by the way, perry wanted to secceed from the union. i guess if she'd done that she couldn't stay in the senate. "hardball" returns after this. glide-up navigation. and ultraview sunroof. ♪ see your cadillac dealer soon. because while there is no expiration date on achievement, on rewarding it, there is. the srx luxury collection. - be my wife. - miss dimitra, marry me. - marry me. - marry me. - marry me. - be my wife, please.
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welcome back to "hardball." we reported on attorney generals of 14 states who filed lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the new obama health care bill. now one state attorney general is defying his governance saying he will not join those 14 attorney generals. here's what happened. right after health care reform passed republican governor, georgia governor sonny perdue wrote to his attorney general requesting that he file suit on behalf of georgia. two days later attorney general thurbert baker of georgia wrote
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back to the governor and said he, quote, respectfully declined the governor's request on both legal and fiscal grounds. didn't want to waste the taxpayer's money" he said. legislator down there are calling for the attorney general to be impeached. georgia general attorney general thurbert baker joins us now. general, thanks so much for joining us. is it impeachable? i was looking at the lawyer down there whereas refusing to failure to perform its constitutional and statutory duties. are your critics saying that you failed to conform your constitution duty by failing to say that the president is unconstitutional is that the argument? is that their argument? >> chris, that seems to be the argument but you know there's nothing in the georgia constitution and nothing in our statutory laws that requires the attorney general of this state to file a frivolous lawsuit. the governor asked me to consider filing a lawsuit against the federal government to overturn the recently-passed health care act. i took a hard look at the constitution. i looked at every piece of law i could find on the matter. i came away with the clear understanding that there was simply no basis at all upon which to file a lawsuit, and if
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we were to proceed in that direction, we simply be wasting taxpayer's money in doing so. >> well, let's cause some trouble, that's what i do here. you know, back in '64 when we passed the civil rights bill in this country especially that key feature that public accommodations act that said basically if you open up a dog store i don't care if you sell tomatoes, if you grew out back, open up that store for business, serve people regardless of race, color, creed. that's the laugh land. interstate commerce constitution to justify it. it seems to require it open up a story, to sell to somebody you can't use the interstate state clause, saying to buy insurance, if they're in to country and expect to get treated into the hospital for free they better darn well pay their fair. or would he have said that? or would he be doing the same thing back then if he were governor? calling it unconstitutional, demand the stores are opened to everybody? i'm asking you a tough question. is he playing the same game
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those people played back then? >> i can't attribute any motives to this governor but let me say this since 1937 this country has been very clear through our u.s. supreme court, that congress has a very, very expansive commerce clause power. and they can regulate both interstate and intrastate. there's no question, as i've looked at that whole issue, that congress has the authority to pass the statute that they did. now there's a lot of policy disagreements out there, a lot of budget policy disagreements out there about the new act, but in in my opinion absolutely no basis upon which to say, congress doesn't have the power to do exactly what it's done in this case. >> well, do you think making the argument the same argument that was made against the civil rights bill especially public accommodations, is it the same argument that the governor's making? >> well, you know the governor
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has not couched it in those terms. you know the governor simply asked me to go ahead and file a lawsuit in this case, as i've said we've looked at a lot of different angles. as a matter of fact, there was an interesting matter. you know several years ago when then-governor mitt romney was the governor of massachusetts, he actually passed the same kind of statutory provision that required residents in that state to have health insurance. just this month a court has ruled in that state, an appellate court that that act was totally constitutional and dismissed the claim. it's the same thing we've got going here now with the federal act. >> and i think even judge scalia, who's a real strict constructionists, whatever you want to call him, the first -- met with what they call -- he basically believes if you pass the law it's got to be given real credibility. what do you make of bill mccolllum, your colleague out here, the attorney general in state of florida. that this bill is quote, an invasion of the sovereign state of florida. this is an invasion of the sovereignty of the state of florida. and you say it's constitutional. talk about different -- different strokes. >> yeah, completely different strokes. and i just respectfully disagree with my colleague in the state of florida. listen, we're all look at the
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same set of laws. we understand that commerce has an expansive commerce clause power. we understand that the medicaid program that we're all engaged in at the state level, that it's a voluntary program. right here in georgia, almost 60% of the moneys that we get come from the federal government. states can choose to opt in or to opt out. so we understand that, and there is something we call the supremacy clause, federal law does supersede state law. so i can't speak for my colleague bill mccollum, but i can tell you from my perspective i've been the attorney general of this state for 13 great years i can find no legal basis upon which to engage such litigation and in my opinion if we go down that road we're going to waste hard-earned taxpayer dollars. >> general, you're running for the governorship down there against roy barnes, another
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democrat in the primary. you're 20 points behind. is this going to be an issue in the campaign? the fact that you won't sue the federal government, is barnes saying he will? is this going to be a democrat issue as well as a republican issue? >> i have no idea what former governor barnes would raise in this campaign but i'm clear on this point. what we've said in this case is absolutely correct. and you know this effort to impeach me here in this state because i've told this state what the law is and really told the truth, it's something that we'll talk about. i'm sure others will talk about as well. but we've done it for all of the right reasons. we've given our best legal advice. that's what the people of georgia elected me to do. that's what i'm going to continue to do and i cannot be intimidated by threats of impeachment. >> so you're not afraid of the governor? you're not afraid of governor perdue? you're not afraid of governor perdue? >> listen. we're going to do the jobs that we've been asked to do.
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this is not a matter of being afraid of one person or the other. what i've been required do as the attorney general is to talk about the law, to give my best legal opinion. that's what we've done here and that's what we're going to continue to do. i would not relent from my position. >> good for you. you know if you had you said were afraid that would had been a hell of a news story. thank you very much. thurbert baker from the state of georgia. thanks for coming up "hardball." the late-night comedians go to town on the republican party's approval of a payment for a sex club out in l.a. i'm not sure what kind of a club it was but certainly not justified political expenses -- well, it probably was in the past. you're watching "hardball."
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ha. back to "hardball." time for the "sideshow." a story that you have to admit was made for late-night comics. in picking up the bill for late-night center of a sex-themed nightclub. catch the reviews. >> i guess they've dropped over $2,000 for staffers at a topless bondage-themed nightclub right here in hollywood. apparently this is the republican version of a stimulus plan. >> usually when republicans find themselves in dark rooms with whips and chains and bondage gear and stuff that's dick cheney's basement. >> "the new york times" even took up the story under the headline "gop opens inquiry on club expenditures." here's a little hint to "the new york times" -- you're wondering why print is dead. perhaps you could have gone something with "right wing xxx-tremists," or perhaps
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"schwing-nuts" or "log-grabbin' republicans." >> now that they've got caught they have their excuses. republican national committee excuses. number three -- hey, we're fat dumb rich guy, enoughf said? and the number one republican national committee excuse for pending legislation, no stripper left behind. there you go. okay rose to the occasion, bring it on. next, dangerously liasons we know that florida governor charlie crist has an until battle to win this year's
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republican nomination for u.s. senate that, explain why he's touting the support of retired colonel bud day. a hero of sorts to conservatives for his swift vote veteran ads for truths supposedly in 2004 that viciously smeared john kerry's war record. crist's got more than he bargained for. with an interview with a florida newspaper colonel day tied together the skin color of president obama and that of crist hispanic primary opponent marco rubio. he said, quote -- crist reaction -- "everyone has a right to their analysis and how they think somebody performs in office." is this what you call analysis?
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analyzing people by race? charlie krys crist, you've got problems. so far just over half of u.s. households have filled out and returned their u.s. census forms which are fun and easy to do, by the way, ahead of tomorrow's official deadline. which state has the top participation rate so far? well as of yesterday's count, way out west, south dakota with 62% in the mt. rushmore state, didn't know that was the name of it, does its homework. 62% of their census forms are already. tonight's very impressive big number. get them in, they're easy to do. up next get ready to be outraged the father of a fallen marine who sued a vulgar nia gay group -- has been ordered to pay the church group's legal fees. i don't get this. the courts, you wonder. [ male announcer ] when you look closely at the mercedes-benz glk, when you study its engineering, its safety systems, and when you consider who will be riding with you,
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i'm lynn berry and here's what's happening. people in new england are dealing with flooding on a scale rarely seen in the northeast. three days of record-breaking rain has washed out bridges and roads, overwhelmed sumg systems and forced hundreds of evacuations. amtrak is suspending some routes on the corridor and portions of i-95, the main north-south highway has shut down. eight of nine militia members pled not guilty in the michigan courtroom wednesday. they're charged with plotting to kill police officers and their families. the ninth is in indiana.
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a federal judge has ruled federal investigators illegally wiretapped and islamic charity and two lawyers as part of the terrorist program. a chechen rebel leader has claimed responsibility for deadly bombings in moscow. he's calling atrocities ordered by the russian prime minister. now back to "hardball." we're back. starting last week "the new york times's" spotlighted report of sexual abuse in the roman catholic church including horrific story about a priest who molested hundreds of deaf boys in wisconsin. it's becoming a big american story again. "the times" reports along with news stories of abuse in ireland and germany has the vatican on a public relation's offensive to beat back charges that the pope himself is responsible for the church's mishandling of some of
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these cases. what's it all mean and what it will all come down? patrick buchanan msnbc political analyst and john walsh is editor and chief at salon. pat and joan, take a look at this new gal op poll. have dropped since he visited the united states two years ago. today just 40% of americans, generally, have favorable views of the pope. it was 60% among catholics and 35% among non-catholics. it's gone down by about 20 points, on average. in those three categories. catholic, non-catholic and across the board. i want to go to pat first and then to joan right away. what is the situation, as you see it, for the roman catholic church? i think that we're all members. joan, thoughts? >> well, the church's got a real problem. what i were do if i were the
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vatican, chris, is i would do what we did in iran/contra, with ronald reagan. we brought in i special fellow, individual, he was totally to handle and get all the details and facts out on that. and answer all questions on that and look into it while the press secretary, as it were, larry speaks out with normal business. i think they need an ombudsman. >> would you have them admit the worst. >> if the worst is there i think that you have to. but let me take mention of this milwaukee thing. that guy was committing these horrendous acts against 200 deaf boys beginning in 1950 up to 1974. three archbishops knew about it. these boys went to priests. the people, they -- their parents went to prosecutors and attorneys, that whole scandal was unfolding. this guy was an old man when weak lind.
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>> would you have given him a break and say he's old and leave him alone. >> well in 19 -- first i would 1950s, for haven's sakes you should have defrocked him and turned him into the police authorities. these are massive criminal actions. this isn't somebody involved with a teenaged boy. this is somebody dealing with teeny zmieds and not a question of a proposition. it's a question of af abusing your authority over people who have no control whatsoever. your thoughts, joan? i think these cases are kids. it's not a question of whatever kind of relationship we might say is out of order. we're talking about criminal acts here. your thoughts? >> they are criminal acts and i'm glad pat and i agree about that. i think that in this case of father murphy, this awful priest, this sad, sad priest and sick priest whom molested the 200 boys i'm sorry to say you guys know i'm a person of mercy, i'm a person who believes people can change and repent, but i also believe in punishment, as deterrence. and so for then-father ratzinger to look at the reports, old reports, pat was right and essentially do nothing and then fall for -- a plea of mercy from the priest himself i think it was completely the wrong thing do. what's happening now is i think a little bit beyond the scope of an ombudsman and although i think hopeful to get all of the information out if that is
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possible. i think that real thing that's touching, the pope right now is that are there several of these instances where he personally was informed of these horrible situations. and in the case i believe in munich, he actually sent -- was part of a decision to send the person for two weeks of therapy, they went back to another church and they rescind. >> why did -- let's be thoughtful here. why would a member of the church hierarchy like cardinal ratzinger or anyone at time, anyone else, the former pope when in that position, why would people show sympathy, primarily for the cleric and not primarily for the victims of a serious crime? why does their sympathy go to the priest and not to the kids? >> i think that's -- >> of a crime? >> that's an incredibly excellent question and it speaks to, you know, yeah, really insular, hierarchical protecting it's own power and authority and less about opening itself up to any criticism let alone any kind of punishment and i think another -- >> something else here, chris. >> i would like to make one other point, pat and i will turn
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it over to you. the other reason this is hitting the pope right now, chris, is as cardinal ratzinger, as the person in charge of church doctrine, he was implicated. he wrote a letter that urged bishops, priests, archbishops to keep these matters pontifical secret. >> this was in '62. that is what is coming -- >> no he -- >> no it couldn't be '62. >> no he -- >> that's not a -- i'm looking at a doctrine that came out -- well, a document that came out of the church in '62 that talked about -- as joan was saying in in other regard. barring bishops from reporting abuse to priest. why does the church not think of this of criminal? you used the term criminal. why not think of these as crimes. >> cardinal ratzinger -- >> hold it, joan. >> i just want to get that fact out. i'm not talking about '62. i'm talking about the early '80s, pat. >> all right, look, no doubt this is criminal activity. you're dealing especially with children under 16 or something
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like that, it's rape and everything else, chris, but let me say this, the pope wrote in letter, apparently let this priest go in 1996, he began has predations in 1950. remblend weakland the archbishop of milwaukee knew about this for three years and writes the pope and says "should i defrock him?" why is the "the new york times" not going after? is a great liberal. let me say this. >> oh, please. >> dealt cards to the enemies of the church and the enemies of the pope. >> that's certainly the case and makes common sense to me but we're talking about friends of the church. >> which predecessor was it. >> look to the church who are respects, nonmembers of the catholic church right now watching this, who believe in an institution of god and don't think of it as a bad place, potentially and usually a good place but now a world wide problem. pat, what floors me --
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>> right. >> -- i thought justice a problem of a particular of couple generations perhaps, a priest who had this problem and get away for, it covered up in the united states and ireland. and it turns out it's a world wide problem. it's getting everywhere and it's not going away. >> well, let me say this. >> that's what i -- >> as we say, murphy was in the priesthood in 1950. but clearly, chris, after post-1960s, an enormous number of these predators and others came into the priesthood, hid there, you know, preyed upon kids, a great number of them. we mentioned milwaukee, it was in new orleans, it's been in washington, d.c. it's been in boston. cardinal law had trouble with it. >> this is what disturbs me. listen to this, joan. quote "court documents show that vatican lawyers plan to argue that the pope has immunity as head of state. and that in 1962 document is not the smoking gun that provides proof of the cover-up." what do you make of the vatican issuing, basically, a political -- a legal defense,
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saying the pope can't be sued because the pope's head of a country, basically, the vatican. and the pope is not the employer, technically, of bishops. that's their legal defense. what do you make of that? >> he has more than plausible deniability here. he's above the law. no law can touch him. he's taking no responsibility for the bishops. he can't be touched by the state because he's a head of state. he has no responsibility to the bishops because he, quote, doesn't employ them. i've never seen such a thoroughgoing, shedding of snnlt a moral or i criminal matter. it's disgusting. >> chris, not everyone. but dozens of diocese, take a look at los angeles under cardinal mahoney, of diocese, even washington, d.c. and others have -- >> it's everywhere. >> -- have this problem. they -- they've dealt with it. they've dealt with it and it's cost the church billions of dollars.
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by the church -- i mean the women that go in there on every weekday or every day and put a dollar into the basket, those are the peoples who's money is being lost and wasted and a lot of people won't contribute, chris to be the church, won't contribute in the basket because they're afraid it's going to go to lawyers or go to pay people off. >> it is and it -- >> that's exactly what is happening. why do you think that these schools are shutting down. >> what's the bigger problem here be joan. the mama station of young boys, older boys, in school. or is it -- or is it the cover-up? >> they're both problems. i can't -- in this case sometimes we say the cover-up is worse know that the crime, not in this case. the cover-up is terrible, the crimes are terrible. they seem to be related in a way. i don't know why. there was an inability to get these men help, to try to -- they've spent a lot of money about they've created facilities. they create these facilities, chris, and then the facilities are really places where these guys can go and hide out and then go back to perish and back to molesting but never take it seriously, something to get rid of. >> guys, a serious problem. look out primarily it looks like for its own priest rather than
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it's people, the victims, the kids and their parents. do you think that that problem's gone? that problem is gone, the cover-up this is. >> well the cover-up i don't been the cover-up. priests have been thrown out, billions of dollars have been paid. new rules have been set down. >> is the problem gone. >> are there some people in the hierarchy who probably covered up, yeah there may well be. >> is the pattern of wanting to cover up gone? >> i think that is gone. >> do you really believe -- anymore. >> no first burned horribly. >> instinct to look out for priest rather than the people in the perishes is not anything. a lot of seminary's shut down. a lot of people are cleaned out, yeah i think that they're on the side of cleaning it up. >> i feel for the good priests. so many. these priests out there, by the way, watching i feel for you because you're getting tarred by this, good priests. >> 95% of them are good men. >> and they have to take this -- >> the great majority are good men and that's awful thing. >> and they give up marriage, they give up sex, they give up freedom, they give up independence, all of their lives, give it up for god and the people and they're blamed
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welcome back to "hardball." back with msnbc political analyst pat buchanan and salon's joan walsh. what do you think is the heat level if it turn out that the democratic national committee had been spending money on a lesbian bondage-themed club and dropped a couple "k" in the middle of the night and god knows young staffers who enjoy spending somebody else's money on this stuff? is getting off easy or is this a big problem or what? >> pat would never let me hear the end of it if that was the dnc, chris, you than. >> is he playing nancy pelosi? san francisco dumping off -- >> it would be my fault. it would be nancy's fault. look, not to make light of the the church scandal but the only person more protective than the pope it seems to me is michael steele. he cannot be fired. he cannot be gotten rid of. >> why not? you've opened up the trap door to yourself, you're in the cage, why can't he be snyder i'm in
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the cage. the easy answer, it takes two-thirds' votes. >> take an african-american guy to compete with the -- >> he's african-american. >> and, therefore, they better not turn tale? >> they can't turn on him. he's been a disaster from day one. i think that pat's going to agree with me on this. but he is protected and so this is going to go on and on. >> i vote for him in the senate. there's trouble. >> i heard you say that. >> i've said it before and i'll say it again i think he's a delightful person to hang out with. he has some of this problem of friskiness or what do we call it a tendency to get in trouble on things that aren't that big a deal but become iconic. >> right, right. he's a little undisciplined, i think. he should not be fired on this. he didn't do anything wrong here. this woman took these guys to the club, she wanted to pay -- >> it's always the woman. >> she was mistreated. she didn't do anything terrible.
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she was fired. she got the other guy to pay for it. she put down the voyeur club to be honest. >> i bet you didn't know it was a voyeur club. >> it was there. >> he knew nothing about it. >> how's michael steele doing as emblem attic leader of the national committee these last couple of years. how is it written one to five. >> too controversial. in terms of himself and his party. >> would you prefer a member of the democratic national party? >> if they win big in november. i still think he's probably be -- >> they won in virginia, new jersey, massachusetts. got a winning streak like they've never seen in the republican party. jack kennedy said victory has 100 fathers. should one of the fathers be
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chairman steele? >> not at all. this is what's going to get him in the end. he came in and they had $24 million. they have less than $10 million. they can't raise money. he likes to spend it. he wrote a book, didn't tell them. he went out on a book tour. he earned $20,000 or so for his speech when the job should fw giving speeches for free for a salary. the list of what he does wrong doesn't end. >> the nasty language used by the tea baggers and the fact you have him out there offset to some extent getting earned for himself by the crazies out there in the mobs? >> he's embraced the tea party. >> this is a nice guy and a good man who makes some -- infind it astonishing that joan walsh is deeply concerned about the republicans spending too much money for limousines and jets and things like that. those are problems inside the party. >> i'm happy they're spending.
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isn't it great that this independent american rejoins the republican party? you're a republican -- >> i'm an independent in virginia. >> republican? >> independent conservative. >> republican party. >> pat, can i tell you -- >> no. >> you just said our party. >> it's hard. >> one of those for a long, long time, chris. >> i want to know -- >> as bob dornan used to say, in or out, buddy. >> i was an independent. ran as an independent in 2000. you join the party because you're independent in virginia. there's no party registration. do i vote republican? almost every time. >> but you feel in your soul you're a republican. >> goldwater-nixon-agnew-reagan republican. >> you kept agnew there in the papt i don't know. >> -- pantheon. >> a development, we went from
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the roman catholic church and michael steele -- >> and strip clubs. >> we go to the iconic member. i see you like in houston when you gave the great speech down there, i'm amazed. you're a man of history. you're not just some guy here on television with me? >> i've been to a lot of places here. >> the guys on the police. >> yeah, came to new york with my press card. i wanted to see it. they were going to levitate the pentag pentagon. >> what? >> if they levitated it, i wanted to see it. >> i have there when the protest capacity. thank you, pat buchanan. joan, you're too young to defend it but thank you for listening as we talked about the old days. when we return, we have thoughts on the molestation scandal in the roman catholic church -- serious thoughts of a layman, that's me. no authority on the subject except my membership in the church. you're watching "hardball."
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